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American Man Learning To Drive In UK Left Baffled By 'Frightening' Roundabouts

Rebecca Shepherd

| Last updated 

American Man Learning To Drive In UK Left Baffled By 'Frightening' Roundabouts

If you've ever driven in a different country, you'll probably know it's a bit of a minefield. So it's no wonder that this baffled American learner driver has filmed a hilarious tongue-in-cheek guide to help others drive in the UK. You can watch it here:


Max Schlienger shot the video based on his own nail-biting experiences while getting to grips with the British rules of the road.

The 35-year-old playfully pokes fun at different aspects of UK driving including Brits driving 'on the wrong side of the road' and navigating yellow-box junctions.

Roundabouts feature prominently in the five-minute video and are dubbed 'the most frightening fixture of any British road' by the video editor.

He's got a point.

Credit: Kennedy News and Media
Credit: Kennedy News and Media

The cheeky guide came about after Max endured months of sweat-inducing lessons trying to remember all the rules of the road - served with a dollop of humour for good measure.

Despite listing all the bewildering rules and customs he's learned, he admits that he loves being behind the wheel in the UK thanks to the 'beautiful scenery' - conceding that 'the sun actually shines some of the time'.

Max has been learning to drive in the UK since he moved over to Edinburgh from San Francisco, California, US, to be with his wife in December 2020.

Max uploaded the video to his YouTube channel RamsesThePigeon on 4 August, and it has racked up nearly 2,000 views.

Credit: Kennedy News and Media
Credit: Kennedy News and Media

Max, from Edinburgh, said: "I've found that since I shared the video, I've had a lot of people messaging me to say 'this hits home', and that's coming from Americans and Brits alike.

"I'd been making notes as I've been learning to drive - and I got to a certain point where I looked back and realised there was a lot to be appreciated from a humour perspective.

"My wife helped me realise that driving in America is like driving on easy mode. The lanes are wider, and everything is signposted in a way so that even the least-intelligent driver can understand.

"Whereas in Britain there is this expectation that you're a responsible human being who can take care of yourself."

Credit: Kennedy News and Media
Credit: Kennedy News and Media

Roundabouts seem to be Max's Achilles' Heel, with the American admitting he finds them a particularly tricky aspect of British roads.

Max said: "The thing about roundabouts is we do have them in the United States, but they are still sort of an oddity.

"Roundabouts are definitely one aspect of British driving that Americans pick up on in comedy - I know it's been referenced in The Simpsons and National Lampoon's European Vacation.

"I may lose my US citizenship for having this preference, but I've come to appreciate the roundabout especially when you compare it to California where everything is in intersections."

Credit: Kennedy News and Media
Credit: Kennedy News and Media

Max admits that although the video is intended to be comedic, it reflects some of his real-life experiences navigating the roads.

Max said: "I've had many run-ins with roundabouts. There's one incident that sticks in my mind, I was approaching this roundabout near Edinburgh and admiring the beautiful scenery.

"As I came up to the roundabout, which was thankfully completely deserted, I immediately started going around to the right, intent as I am on enjoying more of this scenery.

"My wife just shouted, 'What are you doing?!' I slammed on the brakes and began looking around thinking I'd missed a light or something.

"Then two days later, I was driving through central Edinburgh and I came to a part of town where there were two lanes painted on the road around this park.

"I just assumed it was a roundabout and I thought, 'I've got the hang of these now,' so I started driving in what I thought was the left-hand lane.

"But no, this turned into me going towards oncoming traffic as this was a two-lane road with traffic only going in one direction."

A few more lessons might be needed for Max.

Featured Image Credit: Kennedy News and Media

Topics: Viral, America, Driving, Community, UK

Rebecca Shepherd
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